Lockheed Martin Gets $57.3M Contract for Milstar, DSCS Sustainment
Lockheed Martin Space Systems Co. in Sunnyvale, CA received a $57.3 million sole-source contract (FA8808-10-C-0002) to provide operations and sustainment support for Milstar and Defense Satellite Communications System (DSCS) constellations for the next 8 months.
This is a continuation of existing Milstar and DSCS Orbital Operations Support (OOS) and MILSATCOM Logistics Sustainment Support (MLSS) contracts currently performed by Lockheed Martin.
Milstar is a 5-satellite military communications system that provides the US National Command Authorities, US Department of Defense (DoD) and operational US forces with secure, jam-proof communications between fixed-site, mobile and portable terminals. The follow-on system, the Advanced Extremely High Frequency (AEHF) satellite constellation, will support twice as many tactical networks, while providing 10-12 times the capacity and 6 times higher data rate transfer than that of the Milstar satellites.
The Milstar system is composed of 3 segments: space segment, comprising satellites in a ring constellation; terminal segment, consisting of communications terminals installed on ships, submarines, aircraft and vehicles; and mission control segment, based at Shriever Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, CO.
Of the 5 Milstar satellites that constitute the constellation, 2 are of the first-generation Block I design that were launched in 1994 and 1995. Block I satellites feature a low data rate payload built by TRW Space and Electronics in El Segundo, CA, and 2 crosslink antennas built by Boeing Satellite Systems in El Segundo, CA. Both Milstar I spacecraft, DFS-1 and DFS-2, were launched on Lockheed Martin Titan boosters from Cape Canaveral Air Station in Florida.
The DSCS provides US military communications to soldiers in the field, as well as commanders over a wider bandwidth than Milstar’s, but over a less protected network.
DSCS is the mainstay of the US military’s super-high frequency communications. DSCS III, the most recent configuration, provides voice and high-data-rate communications to DoD users. DSCS was used throughout Operation Desert Storm and as a primary communications link for US forces in Bosnia and Iraq.
According to a FedBizOpps announcement, Lockheed Martin’s Milstar/DSCS sustainment contract is a broader, 5-year, sole-source contract for satellite-sustaining maintenance engineering in support of satellite health and safety, and system and mission operations.
The announcement explained that this was a sole-source contract because:
“Award to another contractor will result in a substantial duplication of cost to the government that is not expected to be recovered through competition…[Lockheed Martin] was the only contractor with demonstrated Milstar and DSCS III satellite and ground system logistics capability, past program experience, and knowledge to perform the required software, hardware, and system/anomaly analyses; system design, maintenance, integration and test; and individual spacecraft configurations, orbital operations and procedures.”